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Ian Poulter wins Hong Kong open by one stroke

Final round leaderboard: -22 I Poulter (Eng) -21 S Dyson (Eng), M Manassero (Ita) -20 A Kang (US) -19 G McDowell (NI) -18 R McIlroy (NI)
Selected others: -12 D Clarke (NI) -5 C Montgomerie (Sco)

Ian Poulter
Poulter held off Dyson and Manassero to win in Hong Kong

England's Ian Poulter won his second title of the year with a one-stroke victory in the Hong Kong Open.

The overnight leader bogeyed the last hole but still finished ahead of fellow Englishman Simon Dyson, who shared second with Matteo Manassero.

Poulter's final round of 67 saw him end the event on 22 under par, holding off 17-year-old Manassero, who carded a 62.

Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell began the day two behind but carded a 68 to finish three adrift in fifth.

American Anthony Kang ended the tournament in fourth, while Rory McIlroy, who was runner-up in 2008 and 2009, had a final-round 67 to finish sixth.

Apart from the two-putt at the last and a bogey at the third, Poulter produced another impressive round - after a 60 on day two - which included three birdies and an eagle on the par-five 13th.

The 34-year-old's win was his 10th victory on the European Tour and lifted him three places to 11th in the world.

I'm playing well enough to win next week and that's all I can ask. I can't control Martin's ball - I can only control mine

Graeme McDowell

Poulter is confident he can climb even higher, but after causing a stir two years ago by insisting he was the only serious challenger to then number one Tiger Woods when at his best, the Hertfordshire star is not getting carried away.

"I'll try and win next week first (at the Dubai World Championship)," he said.

"I'm not playing the game saying, 'I'm going to get to number one'. I tried that once before and it didn't work.

"I think I'll just try winning next week and see how high I can go. Tiger has dropped a lot of points and (Lee) Westwood is world number one but if I keep playing well, then who knows? I could get up there."

McDowell is the only man who can overhaul Germany's Martin Kaymer in the European Tour standings - the Race to Dubai - with one event left.

Kaymer did not play in Hong Kong and a win for McDowell could have seen the US Open champion close to within about 68,000 euros (£58,000) of the 25-year-old German.

Instead, McDowell goes to the Dubai World Championship having to make up about 290,000 euros (£249,000) on Kaymer with 914,000 euros available for the winner.

"I'm within touching distance now of next week," said McDowell, who must finish higher than fourth in Dubai to have a chance. "I have a few things to brush up on before Thursday, but all in all, I'm driving the ball great, which is key to next week and I'm feeling really good about my game.

"I'm playing well enough to win next week and that's all I can ask. I can't control his ball - I can only control mine."

Dyson, winner in Hong Kong in 2000 as he went on to seal the Asian Tour Order of Merit, started his round three shots behind Poulter but went into the lead when he birdied the seventh to go five under for the day.

A bogey at the eighth, however, checked his progress and he finished with a 65.

Manassero, who became the youngest winner on the European Tour when he clinched the Castello Masters last month, won 157,093 euros (£134,380) to take his earnings to 846,705 euros (£724,283) since he turned professional in May.



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see also
Poulter maintains Hong Kong form
20 Nov 10 |  Golf
Poulter shoots 60 to seize lead
19 Nov 10 |  Golf
McIlroy impresses as Brown leads
18 Nov 10 |  Golf
Golf on the BBC
01 Jul 11 |  Golf


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